iPhone 13's Wow Feature: It's Inflation-Proof

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The most important thing in tech today is …

the business of the iPhone. Apple launched a slew of products including the iPhone 13 and, bucking some expectations that they’d be more expensive because of chip shortages and shipping bottlenecks, they’re the same price as last year, starting at $700. In fact, I bet most U.S. consumers will end up paying less than usual.

How has Apple pulled this off? Three ways, I think:

One, Apple decided to swallow short-term profit pressures for the long-term health of the iPhone; so margins might take a bit of a hit.

Two, Apple engineered high-end features and a terabyte storage option for the highest-end iPhone, the Pro Max, that now has the price of that version topping out at $1,600. (Meanwhile they just didn’t update the low-end SE at all this year.)

Three, carriers are offering aggressive subsidies on new iPhones to get consumers to trade in old models and upgrade, lowering the upfront cost of the devices.

So even though Apple warned that global component shortages will pressure profit margins and possibly limit unit availability. But here’s the catch: With the strategy Apple is pursuing here, I see a scenario where demand shifts to the high-end iPhones, carrier subsidies entice wealthier phone buyers to splurge, and Apple is actually able to exceed revenue and profit expectations on lower unit volume. (That’s a fancy way of saying they can make more money selling fewer phones.)

While you were sleeping …

Intuit announced on Monday that it’s buying email marketing provider Mailchimp for $12 billion. Nine months earlier, it closed the $8.1 billion purchase of personal finance company Credit Karma. They’re both among the 10 biggest U.S. tech deals over that stretch. CNBC

Apple introduced eSIM support on iPhone with iPhone XR and iPhone XS in 2018. However, while you can use a regular SIM and an eSIM simultaneously, there was no way to use two eSIMs simultaneously — until now. iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro feature dual eSIM support for the first time. 9to5Mac

In the broader world …

Gavin Newsom survived a Republican attempt to remove him from office as California’s governor, ensuring that the Democrat can serve out the rest of his term as the top official in the nation’s most populous state, according to an NBC News projection. CNBC

On the horizon …

9/16, 1 p.m. ET: Fortt Knox 1:1 with Alexander Hardy, Genentech CEO

I’m listening to …